KY ranks 6th highest state for senior food insecurity


LEXINGTON, Ky. (WTVQ) – Data from a new study shows Kentucky ranks as the sixth highest state for senior food insecurity.

Feeding America released the 2016 State of Senior Hunger in America on Wednesday. The study looks at the number of seniors, age 60 and up, that were food insecure in the United States.

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According to the study, 4.9 million seniors in the U.S. didn’t know for sure where their next meal would come from.

In Kentucky, 10.8 percent of the elderly population was food insecure.

With a growing senior population, Feeding America says by the year 2050, the number of seniors with insecure food in the U.S. could increase to over 8 million.

At places like God’s Pantry Food Bank in Lexington, people realize the problem and are working to change it.

They collect food to give to people, including seniors, who can’t afford to buy it on their own.

God’s Pantry CEO Michael Halligan says seniors’ need for help can be for a variety of reasons.

“They may have unexpected medical bills,” said Halligan. “They may have lost a job earlier in life than they had originally planned and not have the savings to bridge them from where they are to where they ultimately want to be.”

That’s why Halligan says he does what he does.

“If I can, at this point in my career, provide some give back by helping get food from where it is to where it needs to be for someone who doesn’t otherwise have access to this food, and put them in a better place in life, I am so blessed and so pleased to do it,” said Halligan.

He hopes, with the tireless efforts of others like him, the numbers of food insecure seniors will decrease across the nation.